Angels & Airwaves is gearing back up after an extended period of band inactivity, during which Tom DeLonge released his first solo album and several books, and Ilan Rubin drummed again with Nine Inch Nails and released his latest album as the one-man band The New Regime.
On Tuesday morning, DeLonge announced that AVA (as the two-man Angels & Airwaves is also known to fans) is putting out its first new release in a year.
Entitled “We Don’t Need To Whisper - Acoustic EP,” it is only AVA’s second new recording since late 2014. In early 2015, DeLonge’s former blink-182 band mates - Mark Hoppus and Travis Barker - announced they were moving on without him and brought in Alkaline Trio guitarist-singer Matt Skiba to fill DeLonge’s position.
“We Don’t Need To Whisper - Acoustic EP” is a described in a press release as a “special four-song EP that celebrates the band’s 2006 debut album with new and stripped-down arrangements of four fan favorites.” It follows last year’s EP by AVA, “Chasing Shadows,” which accompanied DeLonge’s book, “Sekret Machines Book 1: Chasing Shadows.”
The four newly recorded old songs on “Acoustic EP” - “Valkyrie Missile,” “Distraction,” “Do It For Me Now” and “The Adventure” - will be available for download today through Thursday exclusively on DeLonge’s website, tothestars.com. Starting Friday, it will be available on all streaming services. The songs were briefly “leaked” online on Sunday, then pulled, a move that may have been designed to build fan anticipation.
The EP is priced at $4.99 and will be accompanied by a new lyric video for the song “The Adventure,” which features rare studio footage shot during the 2005/2006 recording sessions for the “We Don’t Need To Whisper” album.
The EP will be followed - at a yet-to-be-disclosed date - by the AVA soundtrack for the upcoming movie “Strange Times,” which is being written and directed by DeLonge.
The original 2006 recordings of the four songs on “Acoustic EP” pre-date the arrival of multi-instrumentalist Rubin, who joined AVA in 2011 as the replacement for the band’s original drummer, Adam “Atom” Willard.
By the time AVA’s fifth album, “The Dream Walker,” came out in late 2014, the band had been streamlined from a quartet to a duo that teamed DeLonge and Rubin as a self-contained unit.
In a statement released Tuesday about “Acoustic EP,” DeLonge ?????? said: “It’s been about a year since we put out new music and I wanted to give the fans something while the band works on the soundtrack to the upcoming ‘Strange Times’ film.
“Being in the studio brought back memories of AVA’s first album and I thought it’d be fun to reimagine those tracks and play around with the arrangements a bit. It’s the first time we’ve ever put out an all-acoustic release and it’s great to be able to do it with these songs, which are all pretty special to me.”
The new “Acoustic EP” is dedicated to AVA producer Jeff “Critter” Newell, who passed away in 2012.
“Critter was everything to us,” DeLonge said in a statement.
“We considered him a member of the band. He had the most artistic and beautiful soul and was such a big part of our lives. He always spoke with such poetry. He was my companion during the ... first years of AVA. He would drink and dance in the studio parking lot to these songs till 4 a.m.
“When we started recording these new versions, I couldn’t stop thinking about how much I miss him. His spirit was definitely with us in the studio.”